Candidate for Raleigh City Council, District D

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Saige's Priorities

 
 

All Our Neighbors


Our neighbors deserve true leadership on the issues affecting us. We can’t sit by any longer while a committee takes five-years to deliberate one issue. We need to listen to the amazing professionals in City Staff, and on our Boards and Commissions and make the choices that will advance our shared vision.

 
 
  • Addressing our Affordable Housing Crisis

    There is no quick fix for affordable housing but what has been done and proposed by our current council simply isn’t enough. I’m committed to utilizing every strategy and resource available to us — and to working with all stakeholders to implement effective and sustainable initiatives. We need to address this crisis now and hold ourselves accountable with clear measures of success.

    A few policies I support include:
      1.  Allow Accessory Dwelling Units by right
      2. Free & fast-tracked permitting & re-zoning for affordable housing developments
      3. Reduce minimum parking requirements citywide
      4. Lobby for inclusionary zoning changes & affordable housing linkage fees
      5. Aid in developing a non-profit Raleigh land bank
      6. Increased gentle density by upzoning and allowing duplexes, triplexes, and quads by right
      7. A strategic and partner-driven affordable housing bond
      8. Expansion of the community land trust model across the City of Raleigh

    • Incentives to Preserve Buildings of Historic Significance

      To preserve our limited but valuable and unique historic building stock in Raleigh, I'm committed to working diligently with RHDC and developers to identify a solution that will ensure our historic housing stock is here for years to come. The city of Raleigh must begin to utilize recommendations made by the Historic Preservation Toolkit and develop a historic preservation development plan for the future growth of Raleigh.



  • Partnerships to Raise Minimum Wage to $15

    I will work to create a program that incentivizes private employers to pay livable wages through a living wage certification program so that we can begin to reduce the number of cost-burdened households throughout our city.

    • Increased Wage & Adequate Resources for First Responders

      Raleigh’s growth has increased exponentially but our pay for our core services for Fire and Rescue and Police have lagged by national standards. Those in uniform should be paid a living wage, and through a fair system just like other city employees. We are grossly behind in terms of resourcing our Fire Departments when compared to the national average which puts all of our residents at risk. I am dedicated to ensuring that our first responders are paid fairly and that they have the tools necessary to keep us safe.



  • Establish Eviction-Prevention Grants

    I’ll work to invest in eviction-prevention grants and increase access to legal aid services in housing court to ensure our neighbors are able to stay in their homes to receive the wrap-around support they need instead of being pushed onto the streets.

    • Rapid Re-Housing Support

      We can support rapid re-housing efforts by ensuring individuals and families have access to housing search assistance, financial assistance with rent and utilities, and landlord advocacy and mediation. I believe the city can strengthen its core support offered to Wake County and to non-profit partners who are already doing this work so that we can become a strategic partner in solving the problem.

 
 

A Responsive Council


Every resident, no matter their zip code, background, or identity deserves the full range of resources and opportunities that Raleigh has to offer.

 
 
  • Access to City Council Meetings

    Many Raleigh City Council meetings occur during working hours which automatically excludes many citizens who do not have the ability to take voluntary leave from their place of employment to attend a hearing or to speak in front of the council. I will work to remedy this and find times that are suitable for those that work standard hours.

    • Child Care During Council Meetings

      I will work to ensure that families with children are able to access the full range of City Council meetings by exploring ways in which the city may provide child care services during City Council meetings so that everyone can participate in our meetings.

      Language Accessibility

      Raleigh is home to so many, many of whom English is not their first language. Raleigh does a poor job currently making city communications accessible in print or digital forms to anyone who is not a native English speaker. I will work with the City Manager to address this and make sure that all of our residents have fair and equal access to the city's resources.

      Improved Online Experience

      The City of Raleigh online experience is burdensome for most residents trying to access basic information. From trash and leaf collection information or voting records, I am committed to supporting City Staff to continue to identify ways to improve the online user experience for all of Raleigh’s residents.

      Police Accountability Review Board

      I support the efforts of the members of the Human Relations Commission who sought to bring a comprehensive policy proposal to the Raleigh City Council to establish a Police Accountability Review Board. If I’m elected, I will support their efforts in establishing a Review Board as has been done similarly in many other cities.

      Expansion of the Misdemeanor Diversion Program (MDP)

      North Carolina is the only state to prosecute all 16 and 17-year-olds charged with criminal offenses in the adult criminal system. I will work with Wake County officials to expand the current MDP program to be more inclusive so that more of our residents have access to a fresh restart. For information on how I envision re-modeling the Raleigh MDP please visit Durham City and Durham County’s MDP site.

      Participatory Budgeting

      Participatory budgeting brings community members together in a highly democratic process to decide how to spend a portion of public money. Over 3,000 cities worldwide have implemented participatory budgeting, including Durham and Greensboro. In the U.S., more than $300 million has been allocated through the process, engaging more than 400,000 citizens.

      ID Program for Undocumented Residents

      Raleigh must step up to protect its most vulnerable citizens including undocumented immigrants. I will work to partner with organizations like FaithActions to distribute community IDs and ensure that Raleigh Police Department (RPD) and the Wake County Sheriff’s Office to ensure that these community IDs are accepted as a proper form of identification.

      Instituting Racial Equity Impact Assessments

      Racial Equity Impact Assessment (REIA) is a tool that analyzes the potential impact of policies and choices on different racial and ethnic groups. By asking critical questions throughout the process of making a decision, REIAs will help Raleigh City Council work to prevent racial harm in the form of unintended consequences. This tool can be used to analyze the potential impact of a range of choices, from new transit policies to re-zoning. REIAs are useful in preventing systemic racism and providing opportunities for oppressed communities to insert themselves into the policy-making process.

      Race Equity Training For City Council, City Staff, & Commissioners

      Raleigh’s city government should incorporate racial equity frameworks into the city’s comprehensive plan, and develop a race equity toolkit with required consistent use across departments and commissions. The city of Raleigh must work to eliminate institutional racism and racial disparities in the government. To work towards racial equity, I promise to hold our city officials to a higher standard.

      Inclusion of Renters in City Communications

      Raleigh’s housing market is made up of 48% of renters but currently, the city council only conducts citizen engagement and outreach efforts through property owners. This includes its annual budget priorities survey which means that we are leaving out nearly half of our city’s population when we are making the most important decisions about the future of our community. We can do better by including renters are added to all city communications moving forward, instead of just property owners.

      Focus on Mental Health Support & Coordination

      It is time that the City Council take bold steps towards addressing gaps in support for mental health and addiction services across our city. By providing strategic funding and aligned coordination with area service providers, I am committed to making sure that Raleigh is leading on solutions for those residents suffering from mental health and addiction problems instead of leaving it for others to solve.

 
 

A Healthy Environment


For too long our city has neglected our growing ecological, climate, and environmental justice crises. When I am elected as the District D representative to Raleigh City Council, I commit to leading on the environment and pushing for bold actions to not just reduce the worst effects of pollution but to improve the environment while also building the foundation for a new economy that puts environmental justice first.

 
 
  • Conservation Management To Improve Climate Resilience & Environmental Protection

    At one time Raleigh had a very effective tool to protect environmentally sensitive areas in the city. The Conservation Management zoning district put strict limits on development and maintained many steep-sloped or flood-prone in a natural state by preventing irresponsible development on those parcels. Unfortunately, this zoning class has been all but replaced by other provisions in the code that are more concerned with maintaining aesthetic appearances rather than protecting the environment. But as climate change causes our storms and floods to become more intense and as worsening heat waves become even hotter, it is critical that we do all we can to protect the remaining sensitive areas in the city that also provide us the most help in adapting to our warming planet.

    • Increased Density Along Transit Corridors

      Transportation accounts for 40% of greenhouse gas emissions (the single largest source of climate pollution in North Carolina), and housing policy is strongly linked to it. We must push for a Raleigh that is transportation-focused in its housing policy. Low-density, single-family-home zoning prevents an economically diverse community and pushes out our most vulnerable neighbors. By focusing on walkable communities with more housing options that are closer to jobs, schools, parks, and public transportation, the city of Raleigh will not only diversify its community and provide much needed housing options for many price points but also greatly reduce climate pollution while also providing a higher rate of return on our on our municipal investments.

      Transportation & Connectivity

      I am committed to pushing for investments in multi-modal transportation solutions that begin to reduce the number of cars in our downtown core and other appropriate focal areas. Most importantly, this includes developing a plan for the rapid deployment of separated and protected bicycle lanes, and improved pedestrian infrastructure. When cities are built to support a safe experience for pedestrians or cyclists or scooter riders or any other low-impact forms of transportation, more people will choose these modes which decreases traffic congestion and improves our health and the planet’s health.

      Implementation of Wake County Transit Plan

      Part of my job as your councilor will be to effectively and efficiently implement the Wake County transit plan with all of our county partners to achieve the largest possible ridership and provide the greatest environmental and climate benefits. Part of this process will require proactive consultations with all of those impacted, including Raleigh Bus Drivers, the ones who move our city.